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Police: Failed Suicide Attempt Caused Roxbury Explosion, Fire

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Boston firefighters took this photo of the fire, 4 hours after it started. (Photo courtesy: Boston Fire Dept.)

Boston firefighters took this photo of the fire, 4 hours after it started. (Photo courtesy: Boston Fire Dept.)

BOSTON (CBS) – Police say a failed suicide attempt caused an explosion and 6-alarm fire early Monday morning that left more than a dozen people hurt in Roxbury and led to several dramatic rescues.

WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Karen Twomey reports

Witnesses heard an explosion in the apartment building on Wardman Road just before the fire started around 1 a.m.

WBZ-TV’s Jim Smith reports

Firefighters saved about 15 people, including a 6-year-old boy who was dropped from a third-floor apartment into the arms of a firefighter.

Ten residents, two firefighters and one police officer were taken to hospitals, most to be treated for smoke inhalation.

Investigators say 28-year-old Mohamed Abdul Jabar of Medford walked into Boston Medical Center with third-degree burns and confessed that he started the fire by tampering with a gas line.

He was charged with arson and attempted murder.  He is now being treated in the burn unit at Massachusetts General Hospital.

He has second-degree burns to his arms, hands and face, but police say his injuries are “non-life threatening.”

Police said Abdul Jabar does not live in the building but he may have been in a relative’s apartment.

More than 20 apartments were damaged or destroyed.

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